If you’ve ever dreamed of a perfect mountain village on a lake, then you dreamed of Hallstatt, with its picturesque views, ideal for your next screensaver. This village is a playground of natural beauty with a waterfall (my favorite) situated at the back of the village, which flows through the town to the lake. It acts as a natural cooling system as the snowmelt generates cool breezes.

This small town features quaint streets with terraced views of the lake. You must use stairs from time to time to navigate the town. As you explore, you will get to experience private gardens and hidden walkways that offer quiet moments of reflection. Flowers grow from the many walls that line the narrow streets. Natural beauty tends to find its way through every manmade barrier.

When you finish walking the streets, head to lake to watch the many swans swimming in sequence from the piers. If you feel like seeing the town from a different perspective while taking in more of the lake, just take a cruise, and by the time you get back, you’ll be ready to dine at one of the restaurants in town, where you’ll experience the charm and elegance of a resort with a small village vibe.

After a good meal, head out for the most stunning hiking trails through the mountains with sweeping views (world heritage viewpoint) of the most perfect village by a lake. There is a salt mine tour—and if you’ve never experienced one of these tours, you’re in for a treat. The process of getting the best quality salt for the ages will amaze you. The old-fashioned wooden side will get your heart pumping as you move thru the underground tunnels. When your tour of the salt mines ends, remain there on the south end of town and relax at the small park on a little island just off the lake shore. You can even take a dip there and forget about your worries.

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